Would You Know If Your Car Battery Was Flat?
21 April 2020
A few years ago a friend drove to work, parked the car as they always did, and put in the hard slog for the next eight hours. On returning to the car, it wouldn’t start. It didn’t even make a sound: none of the tell-tale clicking or “rrr-rrr” struggling sounds that tell you something is wrong. The key turned in the ignition and … nothing.
Not having a clue what was happening – the car was perfect in the morning, after all – they called a tow truck to take the car to a mechanic. The mechanic probably laughed loudly, because all that was wrong was a dead battery.
Needless to say, this friend had no mechanical or battery knowledge. If they had even the slightest hint that the problem was as simple as a battery, they would not have had to pay for the tow truck, a new car battery from the mechanic plus the labour charge, a taxi to get home, and a full day without their car. Instead, they could have called for roadside assist of some sort, had the battery replaced, and driven home that evening.
There are some common signs that your battery is on its last legs. Being aware of these could alert you to a problem before you get stranded.
- You’ve had to jump start your car recently. If this is the case, simply driving it around the block or, worse, leaving it idling in the driveway, won’t help. This is especially true of modern cars with complex computer systems.
- Your car battery is damaged. Have a look at it. If it’s cracked, swollen, or leaking, it’s time for a replacement - now.
- The engine turns over but doesn’t start. You can hear it trying, but it just doesn’t have enough oomph. This may not mean the battery is flat, as there could be other causes, but it’s commonly the battery.
- The engine won’t even crank. Like my friend’s car, you turn the key and nothing happens. The lights, radio, and air con don’t work, either.
If you have warning signs, it’s easy to ignore them but almost as easy to stop in at a Battery World store to have the battery tested. This is especially important during times such as these when cars are being used less than usual or during changes in weather. Batteries going flat in the garage are common. It’s good to know whether your battery is just flat and needs charging, or whether it needs replacing.
What if you get caught out? Whether it’s in your own driveway at 9.30am or on a quiet country road at midnight, Battery World Roadside Assist can help. With free call-out during business hours, competitively priced Australian-made car batteries, and fast and friendly service, a Batteryologist will have you back on the road in no time. Looking back, my friend knows that Battery World Roadside Assist could have saved them a lot of money that day.